Do Ouija Boards Really Work? Spoiler Alert: They Don’t.

Relatively Interesting April 17, 2011 260
Do Ouija Boards Really Work? Spoiler Alert: They Don’t.

ouija boardAs children, we’ve probably all tried a Ouija board at one time or another. Remember how it went? Two or more players would gather around the board, and each would place two fingers on the planchette (the pointer). Each person would then ask the board a question one at a time, and, if there was a connection to the spirit world, the planchette would begin to move across the board, spelling out the answer. Sometimes, the board will answer with a simple “yes” or “no”, sometimes it will spell it out.

Generally, using a Ouija board is harmless. However, there are times when the connection to the spirit world can go very wrong. Sometimes, the connection will be to an evil spirit, a demon, or devil. In order to avoid such an evil link, one must follow the five rules of the Ouija board…

Ouija Board Rule #1
Never play with the Ouija board alone. This is for your safety both physically and mentally. Ouija board experiences are occasionally extreme and should this occur you will need someone with which to support you, both during and after the occurrence.

Ouija Board Rule #2
Do not allow the planchette to count down through the numbers or backwards through the alphabet. Doing could result in the spirit escaping from the board, allowing it to terrorize you and the other players indefinitely.

Ouija Board Rule #3
Always place a silver object upon the Ouija board before playing. Silver is known (ahem) for its power to repel evil energies.

Ouija Board Rule #4
Never, ever mention ‘God’, as it is believed that entities contacted through the Ouija board are generally ‘evil’ in nature. Some may appear “good” at first, but it is likely a demon who is playing tricks.

Ouija Board Rule #5
When you are done playing, say ‘goodbye’. Failure to close the Ouija board session by saying ‘goodbye’ may result in the contacted entity remaining present long after you have finished playing.

Pretty scary stuff. So what’s really going on?

The movement of the pointer on the Ouija board can be attributed to something called the ideomotor effect. Humans might not be aware of it, but suggestions can be made to the mind by others, by observations, or by other mediums – and these suggestions can influence the mind and affect motor behavior.

According to The Skeptic Dictionary, tests devised by American psychologist William James, French chemist Michel Chevreul, English scientist Michael Faraday, and American psychologist Ray Hyman have demonstrated that many phenomena attributed to spiritual or paranormal forces, or to mysterious “energies,” are actually due to ideomotor action. Furthermore, these tests demonstrate that “honest, intelligent people can unconsciously engage in muscular activity that is consistent with their expectations” (Hyman 1999). They also show that suggestions that can guide behavior can be given by subtle clues (Hyman 1977).

So, when people go to play the Ouija board, they know in advance of what it’s supposed to do, they (often) expect it to give some sort of results, and unconsciously, they guide the pointer so that it gives “answers”. There are no demons or undead. There are no spirits. It’s just a piece of plastic/cardboard. Nothing more.

After all “If there really is an afterlife, I’ll bet the best way to contact it is through a plastic, mass-produced board game from Milton Bradley! –Mad Magazine



  1. Anonimus March 10, 2014 at 9:00 pm - Reply

    I did this last night with my frend. Today he died in the car crash bcause he didnt say gdbye. dont play. its devil.

  2. HellzBellz March 30, 2014 at 4:39 pm - Reply

    It works I know from experience playing in my early twenties with my cousin we would stay up from 8 pm to 4am falling asleep on the board with only one finger each on it our heads down n half asleep n it would not stop talking to us…spelling out things and telling us our future by asking it questions that no one should know..being young n dumb we asked it who’s dad would die first and it had said Tracy dad will pass firts and he did my father is still alive and in good health..then it had told me my bf was cheating on me i had no idea i was young and dumb i asked it who the girl was and it told me the girls name, it was Debbie which was correct I even got her phone number from the board and called it and it worked it had also told me when he was with her and even told me he got her pregnant this info was not told to me all at once it took several weeks to get this information from the spirts..and I swear on my life and on my eyes that this all true i do not lie and hate liars i have dated many of them. Before all the serious questions I would ask it dumb questions like how many people called my answering machine that night…it said 5, I said who and it named all 5. I immediately called it n all 5 people it said had truly done so. We got so hooked on this cardboard board you can buy in a toy store from toys r us that we were playing it 4 nights a week till the wee hours of the next morning but it was worth it in out eyes we were definetly hooked..Speaking to evil and good spirits didn’t matter as long as we could talk to the dead we didn’t care. Ive been told you are suppose to say good bye to the evil ones because you dont want negative energy in your home. They would spell out to us and call us cunts over n over…fu…die…I’m gonna kill u..and we would joke with them saying no your not relax stop being mean and tell us how you died. The min we would ask the evils spirts to talk about themselves and stopasking dumb questions about ourselves…the spirit would turn nice n say it was sorry and stop calling us bad words. Althought it did tell us it had murdered people when he was alive its still crazy to believe a story like this but I’m not a liar. It actually had spelled out nice ass a few times and we were like who Helen or Tracy has a nice ass and it said Tracy I’m sitting right behind her in the chair..mind you we were on the floor playing it in her living room bent over on our knees…Her little sister was 10 yrs old at the time and jumped in the chair it claimed it was in and it then begain to spell out…ouch get off of me…get off. So then we put it to the test n said if your really here make the phone rang once…we said do it again..and it did..we told it to do it for a third time n picked it up no body was there it just went dead we did this over and over like 20 times and it would ring and hang up as soon as we answered it..Maybe it was because she lived by a grave yard maybe because her house was over 100 yrs old who knows but we did speak to a woman named Emily a lot…turns out she lived there in that house and got sick and died there she was not evil and very nice to talk to…when you ask it selfish questions about yourself only and want to hear your future you will get the answers you are looking for but it will not be very friendly to you. If you talk to it like a person n get to know the spirit first u will get better response about the questions you ask it better information if you take the time to know the spirit first they will come back to you and tell you more questions you have and want to know. We had also asked it what age we would be married it had told me n mycousin the correct ages 24 and 28 her first…it was dead on n also said we would both have a second marraige as well …that came true for her but not for me it even told her what age she would be married again late 30s didnt pay much attention to that but i did come true …as for myself it just keept giving me different numbers first it said 39 …I did meet a man n feel deeply in love for the first time in my life i was truly happy and he would tell people I was his wife and wanted to marry me but after the hunymoon stage was over all the mental abuse stared and him cheating and throwing me down concrete stairs and him getting arrested and restraing orders set in place…I had to say goodbye… it had also went to 43 44 like it wasn’t sure and I didn’t pay attention after playing for 6 hrs I was tired. It did tell me i would have twins but i am 42 now n not looking for another relationship any time soon..funny thing is my first cousin is pregnant with twin due any day now she is 42 as well and her father passed away so my father is the closets thing she has left to her father so maybe it got confused it really never gave me a definet age that day but I did have two abortions in my 20s (which i regret now) maybe those are the kids it was speaking of it said two children i would have..who really knows at this point but i can tell you this playing that bored has made me physic in some weird Fd up ways..i had spoke to a physic 10 yrs ago n she told me i was very intuitive n i know things but dont believe it to be true…she told me i would be told things about people coming to me in dreams …my uncle had passed that she knew about told her to tell me this and he would send me signs through dreams or othe ways… i didnt belive this untill i had a dream about an old friend n it came true..not gonna go into details about her but i also see the number 13 on the clock to tip me off when something bad is coming my way…for instance i wake up n look at the clock in the middle of the night n its 313 then ill get up for work do my routine and its 913 ill go to work (i work in sales) ring a transaction and look at the sales receipt an the time of the transaction will say its 213 the number will just keep coming ever time i pick up my phone n hear a text or an email i look n it always ends in 13 the time…it happend for two days straight n i got a dwi that night. another time it happened for a week and my great uncle passed away..tons of other occurences n something bad always comes out of it… it even showed up alot at the end of my realasonship with the man that called me his wife to let me know he was up to no good when i didnt see him on certain nights ..sure enuff i would find evidence of another woman being at his house…hair on the foor…earing backs..i dont wear earings soo..i think it kind of ruined us me knowing all this crazy stuff because I would look for things because of seeing that damn number and sure enuff you will find shit ever single time you look for it…i would ask him about it n he would call me crazy n deny deny deny typical guy and then get mad at me for acusing him abuse me and throw me out of our home when he was doing me dirty all along… when we did finally end it he told me…you have no idea what I did behind your back so i sent him pictures I took of lipstick on his shirt…dryed up semen on his couch n another girls hair on the floor n I told him I have always been one step ahead and knew all along you just didn’t know it. I told him about my weird gift n he didnt belive it in the beginning I bet he changed his mind.
    Who knows i didnt ask for this and i dont want it..but i will not go away so im stuck. Maybe i opened the door by messing with the ouiji board maybe it is some kind blessing in a weird sense and i just dont know it yet who knows..maybe i should embrace it n not think of it as a curse but i feel guys i meet out (i find the real winners) the number 13 shows up and i immediatly dismiss the realasonship before anything gets started… its telling me to cut this person off they are no good and i find out its correct very strange. All i know is once you talk all spirits and bring that into your life and into your home they don’t want to leave you alone its like they enjoy changing a persons life and having a conversations with the living. Maybe because i stopped playing it they got mad and messed with my future i have always been unlucky in love after messing with that board and feel like i am doomed to be alone the rest of my life. I am a very attractive female that looks like im 28 by my coworkers n friends…i joke around n say i sold my soul maybe i did in some way but i will never know for sure that will be the first question i ask if i get to those golden gates…i do know this when we stopped playing its not because we wanted to but because we had to because of my cousins house being invaded by spirits and her mother was starting to become afraid to be home by herself hearing doors open and close and hearing people walking around upstairs when no one was home ..this experience did changed my life like I said don’t know for good or for bad yet……sorry for the bad grammar typed all this on my cell wasn’t easy but felt compelled to tell my personal experience with the ouigi board..i say stay away no good can come from this for anyone…eventually we stopped and turned 21 n started to hit the bar scene instead lol

  3. HellzBellz March 30, 2014 at 9:16 pm - Reply

    I was also wondering about the number 13 if anyone else has heard of this happening to them and tipping them off that something bad is coming to you I would like to know there are others that experience what I have and what they think it is all about and if there is a way to make it stop.

  4. Anonymous coward April 14, 2014 at 9:14 am - Reply

    Ridiculous! In my early teens, I DID the dumbest thing: I made my own Ouija board on card stock weight paper! I used a small Dixie cup cut in half as a planchette. Then I started playing it ALONE. After several horrible things spelled out about someone dying in a car wreck, I took my finger off the planchette, BUT IT KEPT MOVING ON ITS OWN! It was my LAST time messing with that stuff! Then strange things started happening around my parents house. I had to bring in a Minister to do a spiritual cleansing. There is still a spirit of chaos and confusion that tries to re-enter from time to time if I don’t toss it out! I have learned that they can only occupy a space if you ALLOW them entry. That damn board was the invitation, my naive ways the catalyst.

  5. AJ April 17, 2014 at 12:12 pm - Reply

    Here’s the thing. When the Ouija Board starts spelling things out on its own WHEN NOBODY IS TOUCHING IT… shooting across the board very precisely, spelling the same thing three times in a row, and spinning in a little circle around and around when it doesn’t want to answer questions… that’s the sort of thing that says, “Hi. Freaky evil spiritual force here.” It’s not our expectations-based muscular movement when it moves by itself.

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